Garth’s Country Americana Sale, All Online, Sells Nearly 97 Percent
Review by Madelia Hickman Ring for Antiques & The Arts Weekly
Full article and photos published April 14, 2020
COLUMBUS, OHIO – Country Americana offered at Garth’s Auctioneers & Appraisers on March 28 took place online with a small staff to man the phone lines appropriately spread out in the saleroom. Auction previews were by-appointment only and the number of registered online bidders was significantly higher than for previous sales. Despite the challenges presented, the sale of 415 lots had only 14 passed lots for a sell-through rate of nearly 97 percent.
“We thought prices were good, if not very good; considering what is going on, we were pleased,” said Garth’s chief executive officer and principal auctioneer, Richard “Jeff” Jeffers, speaking with Antiques and The Arts Weekly by phone after the sale. “For as long as there have been auctions, every sale has had some ups and downs; this one was no different. There were a handful of items in the auction that had multiple phone bids on them, which is consistent with every auction we hold. We also had strong trade participation; it was in line with what we normally see.”
Fine art lots won two of the top three spots, led by a panoramic landscape by Edmund Coates (New York, 1816-1871) exceeding its high estimate to bring $3,600. The third highest price in the sale, and the second highest price achieved for fine art was $3,125 for a picture of the black and white cat Polperro by British artist Stuart Armfield (1916-2000). Another cat painting in a circular tramp art frame brought $1,000, five times its low estimate.
A sackback Windsor armchair made ten times its low estimate to sell for $2,400, the most realized for a lot of furniture. A Connecticut sackback Windsor made and branded by Ebenezer Tracy made five times its low estimate to finish at $1,250. With only a few furniture lots going unsold, painted furniture typically outperformed formal furniture, with results largely in line with estimates. An American stepback wall cupboard finished at $813 and a Queen Anne New England curly maple slant-lid desk went out at $750.
Decorative smalls were led by a lot of two Northern European brass candlesticks that realized $3,625, more than triple the low estimate. Two burl bowls were in the top ten prices, both exceeding expectations, with one in red achieving $1,320 and the other making $1,250.
A particularly sizeable offering of bandboxes and framed bandbox fragments – 35 lots in total – were topped by two boxes with beaver decoration, one with a cream ground selling for $1,320, the other with a blue ground bringing $1,250. A significant portion of the bandboxes were from the collection of two Washington, DC sisters.
Prices quoted include buyer’s premium as stated by the auction house.
Garth’s next auction is an Online-only sale of Costume Jewelry for April 20-30. For information, 740-362-4771 or www.garths.com.